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Delays in planning services

We are experiencing high numbers of planning applications and requests for pre-application advice and currently have limited staffing resources. We apologise for any delays in responses to emails and calls. Find out more, including what measures we have in place to overcome these challenges.

Planning permission for houses in multiple occupation

Planning permission is not normally required to convert a family house into a shared house or a house in multiple occupation (HMO) for up to six people.

However, in some areas we've introduced an 'Article 4 Direction' which removes permitted development rights.  That means you need planning permission to change the use of any homes to an HMO.

The direction came into force on 20 August 2014. Any house that was already in multiple occupation use before that can continue to be used as a shared house.

You can view the Article 4 Direction by opening the attachment at the bottom of this page. There are also links to maps of the areas affected.

Alternatively, see if you are affected using our web mapping system.